The push for transferring tech to our everyday wear is well underway, but as with many movements in digital I don’t think the average joe is anywhere near ready for it. NTT DoCoMo’s latest addition may well look clumsy, but they are prototypes and any serious prototyping starts with an ugly looking set of wire conjoined PCB’s and sensors. However it’s the actual concept I feel is clumsy.
Glasses will always be the hardest wearable to attach to the general populous, there is and will be for some time the stigma of glasses, I know from experience! Google Glass is making a huge push to this but it will take a long time before it’s anywhere near a norm.
Now NTT DoCoMo’s version may well eventually be a invisible as Googles version but it’s the expected use that has me frowning, they highlight three features:
- The first being entertainment and information, Google is light years ahead in that respect and as a listed feature it’s pretty vague but obvious.
- The second being ‘in a world of augmented reality (AR) created with the intelligent glasses and their innovative capabilities, such as facial recognition which pulls relevant information from the cloud to provide a profile of a person being viewed’ the demo by the Engadget team shows the glasses pulling information on the person you’re looking at, why would you want this, ask the person you’re looking!!! Can you imaging saying to the person you’re speaking to, “just a minute, my DoCoMo glasses are just about to tell me your favourite colour…..”! The obvious privacy issue is apparently avoided by the process of only loading profile information about people you already know…. then why do you need it?
- The last feature and one made a deal of on the BBC news site, is the text translation, if you’re looking at text in a foreign language, the glasses will translate it. This to me is a classic example of future tech trying to address a now issue, by the time this type of tech is pervasive most text, like menus, will be on screens where translation is built in.
I know it’s early stage prototyping but you have to start with concepts that will be applicable when the product comes to market and that bring real benefits, otherwise it will end up on the pile of tech junk labelled ‘for the sake of it’.